Québec supports to the ratification of the Cartagena Protocol on preventing biotechnological risks

Québec City, May 27, 2005 ─ The Government of Québec decided supports Canada's ratification of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety to the Convention on Biological Diversity.

On the eve of the 2nd Meeting of the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol, to be held from May 30 to June 3, 2005 in Montréal, Monique Gagnon-Tremblay, Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for the Francophonie, highlighted out that, “Québec grants a great deal of importance to the integrity of biodiversity, which supports many of its economic activities. That is why the government supports the Cartagena Protocol within its fields of constitutional jurisdiction”. Such declaration will come into effect after Canada has ratified the Cartagena Protocol.

“Today, we would like to reaffirm, as indicated in our document: 'Shine among the best' and in the 'Sustainable Development Plan for Québec', that the issue of GMOs is an important one for Québec. Indeed, the Cartagena Protocol constitutes one of the major tools to promote the secure control of the circulation and use of these products,” commented Thomas J. Mulcair, Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, and Deputy Government House Leader.

The Québec government thereby answers the concerns of interest groups in Québec by encouraging the federal government to ratify and implement the Cartagena Protocol.

The Protocol's objective is to help govern the transborder movements, transfer, handling and use of any living modified organism (LMO), also known as GMO, that could have unfavourable effects on the conservation and sustainable use of our biological resources, as well as taking into account the risks for human health.

Québec's commitments have been expressed from day one when the international community adopted, on January 29, 2000, in Montréal, the text of the Protocol which is a result of the United Nations' Convention on Biological Diversity.

It should also be noted that Québec was the first province in Canada to officially support the signing of the Protocol by the federal government. The National Assembly unanimously adopted the text of the Cartagena Protocol by special motion on May 10, 2005.

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Information : 418 649-2400 poste 57861

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